ME Labs, Inc.

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Micros, Displays, Adapters,
 Software, Programmers,
Boards, Books, and more.

MicroCode Studio

MicroCode Studio Screenshot
Free Windows IDE for
PICBASIC™ Compilers.


Tools Overview

Many of our customers come to us with little or no experience in the field of embedded programming.   We understand that it can be daunting to try and decide which products are needed to get started.  This page gives a general overview of the product families that are used during the development and prototyping process.

These products can be purchased in pre-assembled bundles that include everything you need to learn embedded programming on the PICmicro®.  Our bundles are - by far - the easiest way to get started.

BASIC Compilers

We offer compilers that turn your BASIC programs into machine language that the PICmicro MCU can use. The PICBASIC™ and PICBASIC PRO™  compilers understand the English-like BASIC syntax. You don't have to learn C, Assembler, or any other cryptic language.

The compiler software is compatible with Windows as well as DOS, and includes a Windows interface that allows you to write code, compile, and launch a device programmer from one user-friendly application.

PICBASIC is simple. Most technical people have programmed in some form of BASIC. PICBASIC uses the familiar constructs like Goto, Gosub, If..Then, and For..Next to accomplish tasks on the microcontroller. In addition, there are specialized commands for different I/O schemes that are specific to the MCU. Some examples are: SERIN/SEROUT for RS-232 communications, ADCIN for reading analog voltages, and HIGH/LOW/TOGGLE for controlling individual output pins.

Device Programmers

Once your code is compiled, you have to get it to the microcontroller. Our programmers do the job simply and efficiently. The Windows software allows you to configure the device options using simple menus and mouse selections. Adapters are available for a wide variety of package styles, and the programmer can connect to your project board for convenient in-circuit programming.

Experimenter Boards

After your PICmicro microcontroller is programmed, you need a place to test it.

One of our most popular product lines is the LAB-X Experimenter Boards. We've designed a series of pre-assembled hardware platforms to accommodate different sizes of microcontroller. These boards allow you to test your software without having to question your hardware. We've already tested the circuitry, and we supply sample programs that can be used to verify its operation.

These boards come with a variety of components. LCD modules for display, RS-232 serial ports, keypads, speakers, switches, LED indicators, and analog controls are all available. Each has a small prototyping area that allows custom hardware to be added. Each has a pre-wired connector for in-circuit programming using one of our programmers. Each comes with full documentation, including a schematic.

Prototyping Boards

Once you're satisfied that your project works, you'll need to build prototypes. We make that easy, too. Our PICPROTO™ Prototyping Boards allow you to easily place the circuitry that you need on a printed circuit board. Choose the PICPROTO board that accommodates your microcontroller. The basic circuitry to power and clock the microcontroller are already packed on the board, leaving a generous area of plated-thru holes for your custom circuitry. Most PICPROTO boards have hole patterns for common connectors and headers as well.